Why you really need to drop ship

Let’s face it, no retailer’s marketplace will be able to compete with Amazon (or Walmart) when it comes to general assortment size. It’s also very difficult to compete in terms of shipping costs, membership perks, and delivery speed. So what other value prop can retailers who are considering opening a marketplace offer their consumers?

3 tips for reducing inventory risk

Inventory has always been one of the biggest risk factors for retail. Even the best case scenario for unsold items involves significant markdowns and/or selling to off-price retailers to recoup initial investment. Just a few quarters of sales disruptions (like some retailers are experiencing with COVID-19) can lead to bankruptcy as capital remains frozen within unsold inventory and revenue dries up. Ascena and Brooks Brothers are facing that grim reality right now.

How to build for omnichannel scale

Without robust omnichannel programs, retailers have less assortment, sell less of their inventory, and offer much less customer choice. All of which translates into lower growth and revenue. And yet building a scalable omnichannel program is a labyrinth of financial, technical, and multi-team challenges that can quickly turn into a money-pit with little or no growth to show for it.

Should you open a marketplace?

A lot of retail companies are wondering if they should open a marketplace. Such models offer the promise of unlimited assortment without the need for upfront investment, inventory risk, or costly trading partner integrations. Additionally, marketplaces seem to be one of the reasons why Amazon and Walmart have seen amazing growth in their ecommerce, even during the recent pandemic.

Do you really need a marketplace?

Let’s face it, no retailer’s marketplace will be able to compete with Amazon (or Walmart) when it comes to general assortment size. It’s also very difficult to compete in terms of shipping costs, membership perks, and delivery speed. So what other value prop can retailers who are considering opening a marketplace offer their consumers?

Do You Know What to Look for in a Retail Drop Shipping Partner?

Finding the right retail partners to drop ship with will lay a solid foundation for the growth of your operation. Some of the ROIs you might reap include lower cancellation and return rates, lower oversell risk, lower data exchange overhead, higher volume with reasonable predictability, more inventory turns, quicker times to shipment, less tax liability, the ability to bring products to market faster, lower production and logistics costs, and hopefully, increased sales and marketshare.

Marketplaces, Are they Worth it?

Besides weighing the various benefits and drawbacks, you must be comfortable with the fact that marketplaces are not just neutral platforms for selling products but competitors in their own right who will have access to your sensitive customer and supply chain data.

The Power of Supply for Digital Marketing, Part One – Four Supply Woes that are Digital Acquisition Killers

If your performance marketing team isn’t pushing you for intelligent assortment and significant visibility to inventory, they are missing out on a step-change in their ability to allocate budget. Better quality differentiated assortments along with rich item data not only improve conversion rates but also have excellent value for building first-bid predictive models (more on that at a future date).

Four Takeaways From the D3 Conference in New York

As usual the sessions and panels were also top notch, with speakers from Target, Amazon, REI, and JD.com to name a few. In the coming weeks we’ll be writing a few in-depth blog posts based on some of the topics that were discussed. In the meantime, here’s an overview of important takeaways from the panels and speeches attended.

Unravelling the Supply-Side Data Black Hole

Expanding inventory data improvements to include suppliers is therefore essential for brick and mortar retailers to achieve success with digital consumers. It will require data technology that takes the complexity and cost out of inventory integration across hundreds of different systems while processing all that disparate data into a single source of truth in real time.